CO Reports: Grouse Hunters More Successful – Pine and Lakes Echo Journal

District 9 – Brainerd Area

CO Tony Flerlage (Crosby) saw an increase in small game hunters and the number of grouse caught. Ducks have stayed in the area and hunters are enjoying the season so far. The use of ATVs and participation in fishing have decreased, but some people continue to go out. He gave a talk to Crosby School seventh and eighth graders as part of his Canoemobile event.

CO Jim Guida (Brainerd East) patrolled this week looking for big game, migratory waterfowl and small game hunters. Field training continued with COC (Conservation Officer Candidate) Ulrich. A cattle producer reported the loss of a calf due to wolf predation. A trapper was notified and confirmed it as a wolf kill. Nine gray wolves were removed from the kill area.

CO Chelsey Best (Pequot Lakes) reviewed small game, waterfowl, bear and deer hunters last week. Enforcement action was taken for various violations and assistance was provided in an ATV accident. Several wildlife-related calls were also answered.

CO Calie Cook (Crosslake) spent time monitoring small game hunters and ATV drivers throughout the week. He also responded to an ATV accident and answered numerous calls from the public with questions related to hunting.

District 2 – Bemidji Area

CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) continued field training. Waterfowl hunters continue to have some success bringing in a variety of ducks as the season progresses. A reminder to waterfowl hunters to make sure you correctly identify what you are shooting before you shoot. He also spent time patrolling the area’s ATV trails and checking on fishermen in the Cass Lake chain of lakes. He attended in-service training at Camp Ripley.

District 4 – Walker Zone

CO Michael Cross (Lake George) completed his background investigation and participated in the annual training at Camp Ripley. Additionally, Cross worked angling, waterfowl hunting, small game, and big game. Enforcement actions were taken for numerous waterfowl, small game, and boating violations.

CO Patrick McGowan (Walker) continued to train a new Conservation Officer from the recent Academy. The officers worked at Leech Lake and attended Division training. Enforcement actions were taken for numerous fishing and boating violations.

CO Jacque Hughes (Longville) reviewed small game hunters and anglers. He also answered calls about an injured eagle and an injured bear.

CO Adam Seifermann (Staples) reports checking anglers and hunters for seasonal activity. He also completed the online training and attended the fall training at Camp Ripley.

CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) primarily reviewed fishermen, duck hunters, and ATV drivers. Mathy also investigated a deer hunting TIP and a report of animal carcasses being dumped. Enforcement action was taken for angling and ATV infractions.

District 7 – Grand Rapids Area

CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked on waterfowl activities over the past week with many ducks still in the area. Enforcement action was taken for not having the proper seals to hunt waterfowl and not having enough life jackets on a vessel. Sutherland also issued road kill deer permits and ATV permits for partially disabled hunters.

CO Brian Holt (Grand Rapids) worked on angling and RV activities last week. He also spent time working on boating safety and attending training at Camp Ripley. The enforcement action involved angling license violations.

CO Taylor Hochstein (Hill City) continued to focus on small game hunting and ATV activity. Grouse hunting is still good and is expected to improve as more leaves fall from trees and bushes. Enforcement action was taken for grouse and woodcock hunting violations. Several cases were worked on in which people abandoned the property and/or dumped garbage in the forest.

District 10 – Mille Lacs Area

CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) checked the activity of the lake where the drop in water temperature increased the success of the fishermen. He also attended some training, helped with the auction of confiscated equipment, and helped with an injured loon.

CO Victoria Griffith (Island) followed up on intrusion and wetland complaints. She devoted time to controlling small game hunters and archery. Griffith worked an ATV detail on the trails at Spider Lake. Assistance was provided to local agencies and enforcement actions were taken for ATV and small game violations.

CO Nate Benkofske (McGregor) checked out hunters and fishermen in the area. State parks and forest campgrounds were patrolled. Assistance was also provided in an ATV accident.

District 11 – St. Cloud Area

CO Stephen Westby (Little Falls) assisted with in-service training at Camp Ripley for firearms qualification and use of force. He received several phone calls from people with various questions and concerns.

CO Tou Vang (Pierz) helped with training and instructions last week at Camp Ripley.

CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) had a busy week. He assisted area county sheriff’s deputies with two vehicles in the ditch. One was a semi driver who was arrested for DWI. VanderWeyst also helped with a capsized boat where a fisherman went out into Rice Lake on a very windy day. His ability to pull the inflation cord of the life jacket he was wearing saved his life. VanderWeyst also attended the training at Camp Ripley. Various other calls were also handled at vacant stations, including hunting in the closed area of ​​a WMA, cameras left in WMA, and littering in a protected waterway.

CO Keith Bertram (Long Prairie) spent most of the week working as a duck hunter. Enforcement action was taken for loaded gun license and transportation violations. There was also a case where a bowhunter shot a doe and decided not to tag it and cut it himself so that he could keep his tag and continue hunting.

District 12 – Princeton Area

CO Mike Krauel (Mora) spent the week monitoring anglers, attending training and monitoring waterfowl hunters.

CO Ryan Hanna (Milaca) answered questions about WMA land use and leaving duck decoys unattended in public waters. Hanna taught some ATV and firearms safety classes.

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